Beer dinners are becoming all the rage these days, so I thought it was high time I attended one.
For my first beer dinner, I chose the Freehouse dinner at Barony Tavern. I was interested in this one mostly because I’ve had very little interaction with Freehouse and was curious to see if organic beer tasted any different. Plus, I love what Chef Carter is doing at Barony Tavern.
Here’s a breakdown of the meal:
Citrus Smoked Salmon
Folly’s Pride 4.5%
I’ll admit I was a little apprehensive about this course. Salmon is one of those fish that is either done really well or it tastes like an old fish market. Plus, things that are smoked can easily be over smoked if Chefs cut corners and use too much liquid smoke. Luckily, this salmon was cooked perfectly. There was just a hint of smoke and lots of citrus to cut down on that typical fishy taste, and gave it lots of depth and freshness. The kale in the slaw was very tender and complemented the fish nicely. The Folly’s Pride had nice citrus flavors in it that made it the perfect complement to the salmon.
Pan Seared Sea Scallops
Bacon Risotto, Peach Chutney, Bruised Bibb Lettuce
Double Door IPA 8.2%
Who doesn’t love scallops? So buttery and rich, it’s like a Paula Deen party in your mouth (minus all the racism). Chef Carter paired that with an equally rich bacon risotto, which was quite tasty. The peach chutney added a little fruitiness to the dish which helped tie it into the Double Door IPA. The IPA had a strong, hoppy taste with notes of citrus that made it a perfect match for this dish.
Pan-Roasted Pork Chop
Mushroom, Pine Nut, Bleu Cheese Stuffing, Potato Napoleon, Blistered Kale, and Natural Jus
Red Door Ale 7.2%
Holy pork chop, Batman! Chef Carter definitely doesn’t skimp on the portion sizes. This big mamajama wasn’t just a pretty face, it was also damn tasty. It was perfectly moist and I probably could’ve just cut it with a fork, it was so tender. The potato napoleon was amazing. Crunchy potato layered with mashed potatoes, perfectly creamy, and rich. I was a huge fan of the mix of textures that one doesn’t normally get with potatoes. The Red Door Ale, a hoppy red ale, with strong amber notes that really brought out the flavors of the pork.
Salted Caramel Mousse
Caramel Ice Cream, Brandy Snap Cookie
Coffee Brown Ale 5.1%
I think this was my favorite course just because I tend to prefer dark beers. The salted caramel mousse was just as fun to eat as it was delicious. Nice and rich and chocolatey with a great mix of textures. I loved the caramel center inside of the mousse, it was a fun little surprise. The coffee in the coffee brown ale was amazing with the caramel ice cream.
I think Barony Tavern is attempting to get into more beer dinners, and if so, you should definitely try to attend one. Chef Carter really knows how to pair beer + food, so you’ll be in for a treat!
Barony Tavern is located at 68 Wentworth Street.